Thuan Hung craft village in Can Tho City, located in the Thot Not District of Vietnam’s Mekong Delta region, has a rich history and tradition of rice paper making that spans over a century. The village is renowned for its expertise in producing high-quality rice paper, which has become an integral part of the culinary culture in southern Vietnam. The craft of rice paper making in Thuan Hung has been recognized as an intangible cultural heritage by the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism of Vietnam.
This recognition highlights the cultural significance and value of this traditional craft, preserving it for future generations. The production process of Thuan Hung rice paper involves several meticulous steps. It begins with locally sourced rice flour, which is aged for around six months to achieve the desired texture and flavor. The aged rice flour is then mixed with water and carefully cooked on a cloth placed over a pot of simmering water. Traditional rice husk stoves are commonly used for this purpose. Skilled artisans in the village work together in a coordinated manner during the crafting process. One person spreads the batter onto a flat, handled pan in a circular shape, while another lays the rice paper on drying racks made from coconut leaves. The drying racks are strategically positioned along the banks of the Thom Rom Canal, allowing the rice paper to dry under the warm sun. The drying stage is essential to achieving the right balance of moisture in the rice paper. It takes approximately 30 minutes for the rice paper to dry, during which it retains a slight moisture level that imparts flexibility and resilience.
The artisans must also possess the expertise to maintain the round shape of the rice paper during the drying process. Once dried, the rice paper is carefully detached from the racks, folded into stacks, and smoothed to ensure a neat and presentable appearance. The final product is transparent rather than white, exhibiting the delicate craftsmanship and attention to detail that went into its creation. Thuan Hung rice paper comes in various sizes and flavors, catering to different culinary preferences. Some popular variations include dipped rice paper, rice paper for spring rolls, chili-infused rice paper, coconut-flavored rice paper, sweet rice paper, and rice paper served with fermented shrimp sauce.
The craft village is home to approximately 100 households spread across four hamlets, with many families actively engaged in rice paper production. While some households have embraced mechanized methods to increase efficiency, the majority still adhere to the traditional manual craftsmanship that has been passed down through generations. Thuan Hung rice paper has gained recognition not only within Vietnam but also across borders. It is available in local markets, stores, and supermarkets, and is even exported to neighboring Cambodia. The preservation of Thuan Hung craft village and its rice paper-making tradition showcases the cultural heritage and local pride of the community. By visiting this village, one can not only witness the age-old art of rice paper making but also gain a deeper appreciation for the craftsmanship and dedication that have sustained this traditional craft for over a century.
To reach Thuan Hung Rice Pager Craft Village in Can Tho City, you can follow these general directions:
- Arrival in Can Tho: If you are arriving by air, you can book a flight to Can Tho International Airport (IATA: VCA), which serves domestic and international flights. Alternatively, you can reach Can Tho by bus or boat from other cities in Vietnam.
- From Can Tho City Center: Once you have arrived in Can Tho, you can hire a taxi, use a ride-hailing service, or take a local bus to reach Thuan Hung Craft Village. Taxis and ride-hailing services are easily available throughout the city. Make sure to have the village’s address or name written down or saved on your phone for the driver’s convenience.
- Thot Not District: Thuan Hung craft village is located in the Thot Not District of Can Tho City. The exact location within the district is Tan An Hamlet in Thuan Hung Ward. You can communicate this information to your driver or refer to GPS navigation for precise directions.
It’s advisable to plan your visit in advance and consider the distance and traffic conditions, especially during peak travel times. Additionally, if you prefer a guided experience or would like to arrange transportation and a tour, you can contact local travel agencies or tour operators in Can Tho for assistance.
Remember to check the latest travel information, including any possible route changes or updates, and follow any local regulations or guidelines regarding transportation and visiting the craft village.